Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Review: The Girl's Guide to (Man)Hunting by Jessica Clare

The Girl's Guide to (Man)Hunting
The Girl's Guide to (Man)Hunting by Jessica Clare

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

A librarian heroine and an ex-NFLer hero? Woohoo!, I thought.

Not so much.

This might be a bit of a personal preference thing because I kinda found their relationship a little, um, icky. I mean, who the hell sleeps with a guy that you think, basically, performed a sexually charged action against you without your consent? And maybe it's because I've lived in suburbia all my life, but I can't believe an entire town is blaming for the victim for what was, in essence, child pornography. She was a minor. Okay, I went back to double-check and the author makes it a point of saying it's the heroine's freaking birthday and so she was eighteen when the photos were taken. Still. Even if I'm going to accept the fact that the police were like, 'eh, you asked for it,' (let's face it, it's possible) why the hell didn't the heroine just email the hero & be like, 'Bastard, take down the pictures!'? Why didn't he email her if he was trying to contact her? Clearly the internet existed back then if the photos were uploaded.

I ended up skipping over most of the sex scenes, not because of their lack of hotness, but because I just couldn't deal with the inequality of their relationship. First, I felt like she was paying him for sex because the book was all 'two grand for the class, yadda, yadda' and it was clear that the heroine was only doing it for the possibility of sex and revenge. Then, once we learn that the hero has no idea about the pictures, I felt bad for him because he has no idea that the heroine is perpetrating a major deceit with the goal of sexually exploiting him.

Furthermore, when the photos were actually taken down, I felt like the consequences should've been a lot more severe. Being recorded without consent is creepy and if it's sexually explicit, it's wrong. To go a step further and distribute it, well, I'm on my work computer so I can't exactly Google 'posting naked photographs without subject's knowledge legality,' but I'm pretty sure it's illegal. Male or female, no one has the right to do something sexually explicit to you without your permission. No matter how you slice it, it's a form of rape.

If I pretend that the heroine is mad at the hero because of some run-of-the-mill misunderstanding, The Girl's Guide to (Man)Hunting would have been three stars until they got out of the woods, at which point it would've gone up to four stars. It's obvious who the other couples will be and I might read the next book if I ever see it at the library. So if you think I'm taking the 'naked photos on the internet' too seriously and you liked Molly O'Keefe's books, you may enjoy Girl's Guide. If you agree with me, then skip it.